Samuel Johnson Quotes

A decent provision for the poor is the true test of civilization.
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Quoted by the Rev. Dr. Maxwell, in James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson, 1770 entry (1791).
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Depend upon it, Sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. quoted in James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson, Sept. 19, 1777 entry (1791).
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He left the name, at which the world grew pale, To point a moral, or adorn a tale.
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British writer. The Vanity of Human Wishes: The Tenth Satire of Juvenal Imitated (l. 221-222). . . The Complete English Poems [Samuel Johnson]. J. D. Fleeman, ed. (1971) Penguin Books.
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It is the only sensual pleasure without vice.
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. repr. In Johnsonian Miscellanies, vol. 2, p. 301, ed. George Birkbeck Hill (1897). Quoted in Anecdotes by William Seward, European Magazine (1795).
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They teach the morals of a whore, and the manners of a dancing master.
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Quoted in James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson, 1754 entry (1791). Referring to Lord Chesterfield's Letters to His Son. Of Chesterfield—Johnson's erratic patron—he remarked, "This man I thought had been a Lord among wits; but, I find, he is only a wit among Lords."
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Pour forth thy fervors for a healthful mind, Obedient passions, and a will resigned;
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British writer. The Vanity of Human Wishes: The Tenth Satire of Juvenal Imitated (l. 359-360). . . The Complete English Poems [Samuel Johnson]. J. D. Fleeman, ed. (1971) Penguin Books.
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What is written without effort is in general read without pleasure.
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Quoted in Anecdotes by William Seward, Johnsonian Miscellanies, vol. 2, ed. George Birkbeck Hill (1897).
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Depend upon it that if a man talks of his misfortunes there is something in them that is not disagreeable to him.
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Quoted in James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson, 1780 entry (1791).
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But grant, the virtues of a temp'rate prime Bless with an age exempt from scorn or crime; An age that melts with unperceived decay, And glides in modest Innocence away;
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British writer. The Vanity of Human Wishes: The Tenth Satire of Juvenal Imitated (l. 291-294). . . The Complete English Poems [Samuel Johnson]. J. D. Fleeman, ed. (1971) Penguin Books.
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Difficult do you call it, Sir? I wish it were impossible.
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Anecdotes of Distinguished Persons (1797). quoted in Anecdotes by William Seward, repr. In Johnsonian Miscellanies, vol. 2, p. 308, ed. George Birkbeck Hill (1897). Referring to a violinist's playing.
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